By Stanley Nwanosike
The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), on Thursday applauded Otunba Gani Adams over his appointment as the Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yoruba nation by the Alaafin of Oyo.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, confirmed the choice of Adams for the title on Sunday during his 79th birthday celebration.
Aare Ona Kakanfo in the pre-colonial Yoruba history was a supreme military title conferred by the Alaafin of Oyo.
The NANS’ National Public Relations Officer (PRO), Mr Bestman Okereafor, gave the commendation in a statement issued in Enugu.
Okereafor, however, called on the new Aare Ona Kakanfo to see this sacred position as a clarion call to service in the defence of the fundamental rights of the Yorubas.
He said the title was also a call to uphold the rich cultural heritage and inheritance of the Yoruba nation, without any fear of favouritsm or nepotism which might be caused by political interference.
“The leadership of NANS, under the leadership of Comrade Aruna Kadiri, heartily congratulates and felicitates with Otunba Gani Adams on his emergence as the new Are Ona Kakanfo of Yoruba nation.
“NANS wishes to specially commend Iku Baba Yeye, Oba Lamidi Olayiwola Adeyemi III, the Alaafin of Oyo for the critical decision.
“We believe that the decision, no doubt, has been taken purposely for the total emancipation and revival of the Yoruba culture and in defence of the Yoruba nation’s rights.
“This is indeed a progressive, one coming after 19 years of the demise of the former Are Ona Kakanfo, the late Chief M.K.O. Abiola,” he said.
He said the late Chief Ladoke Akintola and the late Chief M.K.O. Abiola were the last two personalities to occupy the powerful Yoruba traditional position, in recent time in history.
NAN reports that Adams, 47, has 52 chieftaincy titles to his credit so far in the country.
The Aare Ona Kakanfo title was held last by the late Abiola, the acclaimed winner of the June 12, 1993 Presidential Election, who died in 1998.